An estimated 40bn chickens around the world each year are subjected to suffering in factory farms © 123RF
An estimated 40bn chickens around the world each year are subjected to suffering in factory farms © 123RF

Domino's 'failing' on chicken welfare, says campaign group

14 January 2019

Fast food chains including Domino’s and Nando’s have been attacked for their treatment of chickens.

Campaign group World Animal Protection investigated the policies and reporting of chicken welfare in supply chains behind the top nine fast food companies: Domino’s (Inc), Domino’s (plc), Nando’s, Pizza Hut, KFC, McDonalds, Subway, Starbucks and Burger King.

The Pecking Order report ranked the fast food chains on existing policies to protect chickens, targets to improve chickens’ lives, and progress reporting.

WAP said: “We chose to assess these companies for The Pecking Order because they’re the big players in the industry and have the power, and the responsibility, to improve the lives of millions of chickens every year.”

None of the food companies achieved higher than a “poor” rating, with those that had policies and targets failing to provide adequate, universal reports on their progress to improve chicken welfare.

“Despite making billions of pounds from chickens, these huge companies are doing very little to give them better lives,” said WAP.

Domino’s Inc (North America) was ranked lowest as “failing”, scoring zero on policies, targets, and reporting. Domino’s plc (UK & EU), also “failing”, has a global animal welfare policy but chicken welfare is “weak”, it has no targets and “very limited data” reporting.

Nando’s was rated “very poor”, with weak commitments to policies, limited, country-specific targets and insufficient data on progress.

Pizza Hut and KFC were graded with the same “very poor” score due to lacking commitments, limited targets, and little data reported.

McDonalds, while still “very poor”, provided “several commitments to improving chicken welfare across most of the geographies the company is present in”, however it has been marked down because its welfare procedures do not align with best practice. The fast food chain avoids broiler cages but doesn’t have any further targets, and reports limited information on progress.

Subway, Starbucks, and Burger King were all rated “poor”, with policies and targets rated “fair”. However, they all failed to report progress and their policies and targets were limited to one region or country.

WAP said the fast food chains had ineffective or no global policies in place to improve chicken welfare, and “in most areas, chickens are not guaranteed a humane slaughter.” The report said only three out of the chains – Burger King, Starbucks, and Subway – displayed an intention to address the problems at farmed chicken factories.

WAP recommended: “Give chickens space to move more freely, and stop using cages. Use breeds which grow at a healthier, more natural rate, and create enriched environments providing opportunities for chickens to behave more naturally.”

WAP said it was estimated that “40bn chickens around the world each year are subjected to significant suffering in factory farms”.

Domino’s did not respond to an SM request for comment.

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